tv PBS News Hour PBS October 27, 2014 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT
captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions >> woodruff: debating the effectiveness of ebola quarantines in the u.s. some state governments ease off strict mandatory requirements for medical workers returning to the u.s. after being exposed to people with the virus. >> woodruff: good evening, i'm judy woodruff. gwen ifill is on assignment. also ahead this monday, pro- western parties win big in ukraine's parliamentary elections. how pro-russian separatists fighting in the east will respond. >> woodruff: plus... >> we don't get to say which students get some opportunities and which ones are left behind those days are way over. >> woodruff: ...in miami, the push for physical education that meets the needs of students with disabilities.
>> it's relaxing. so the kayaking, that repetitive thing, that same thing, they really enjoy it. >> woodruff: and... ♪ ♪ ...struggling blues musicians get a fresh start at life and their careers. 6>> we literally said... performing attire, clothes, shoes, everything. >> woodruff: those are some of the stories we're covering on tonight's pbs newshour. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: ♪ ♪
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>> woodruff: the u.s. centers for disease control issued new guidelines late today for dealing after two states, new york and new jersey, eased the quarantine rules they announced on friday. >> these kinds of policies need to be driven by science and the best scientific advice that is available. >> woodruff: the white house kept pressing states today not to force doctors and nurses into quarantine, if they've been in west africa. but already, new york governor andrew cuomo had backed off his initial policy, in a statement last night. >> a health care professional or a citizen returning to this region who had exposure to infected people, will be asked to remain in their homes for 21- day quarantine period.
during those 21 days, health care workers will check on them twice a day to monitor their temperature. if they develop symptoms, they will be transferred to a hospital. >> woodruff: new jersey followed suit, agreeing to release nurse kaci hickox from an isolation tent outside a newark hospital. she had been confined for three days despite showing no symptoms and she had threatened to sue. governor chris christie confirmed the policy change as he campaigned in florida for a fellow republican governor. >> i'm hopeful that this morning if all goes well that we'll be able to release her and send her back to maine where she can continue to be quarantined in her home. >> woodruff: along with new york and new jersey, the state of illinois which has no ebola cases so far announced its own
quarantine plan for those who've come in contact with ebola patients abroad. four other states, pennsylvania, maryland, virginia, and georgia stopped short of outright quarantines, but ramped up their monitoring efforts. those moves came after dr. craig spencer came down with ebola in new york. he had returned from treating patients in guinea. just the same, the president's top medical advisors charged the restrictions are unjustified, and the head of the united nations ebola mission complained of hype and hysteria. but despite the warnings, the u.s. army unveiled its own quarantine policy today: troops returning from ebola duty in west africa are being isolated for 21 days at a base in italy out of an abundance of caution. the white house minimized the apparent contradiction.
>> i know that there was this decision that was made by one commanding officer in the department of defense, but it does not reflect a department- wide policy that i understand is still under development. >> woodruff: the quarantine debate is playing out as the number of ebola cases worldwide has surpassed the 10,000 mark. nearly half of those have resulted in death mostly in liberia, sierra leone and guinea. the u.s. ambassador to the u.n., samantha power, was in sierra leone today, to discuss the crisis with national leaders. yesterday, she visited guinea. >> together we can beat this epidemic. we have beaten every ebola epidemic in history and we will do so if we dramatically increase our involvement and our engagement. >> woodruff: meanwhile, the c.d.c. rolled out its latest ebola rules this afternoon. it called for... workers should agree to inhome isolation and monitoring if they suffered needle sticks or other direct exposure.
a short time ago i spoke with dr. anthony fauci of the national institutes of health about the guidelines and quarantines. dr. tony fauci, thank you very much for joining us. these now c.d.c. guidelines recommending voluntary at-home isolation for healthcare workers returning from west africa who are in a so-called high-risk category, how does one determine these guidelines are strict enough? we've seen there have been already been mistakes. >> well there's really a difference here, judy and that is what is being matched is the stratification of the risk of the person, according to the risk. so you mentioned high-risk. there are some very clear guidelines now, if a person is high risk and they have symptoms, this is what you do. if they're high-risk and don't have symptoms, this is what's called direct active monitoring, namely a person is monitored not only that they take their
temperature and tell someone but someone actually every day comes and monitors the person with the temperature and an evaluation of symptoms and that the decision is made based on that exactly what the restrictions are. but clearly, if someone is at high risk, they are not going to be able to do the kind of public transportation or what have you, but they will be monitored on a daily basis. what we have injected into the formula is the issue of the clinical judgment of somebody on an interim basis continually monitoring the asymptomatic person, the person whose symptoms are no problem. you go ahead and ic isolate that person until you can prove they don't have ebola. the iffy area, they're restricted but continually monitored in an active way. that's new and i think should add a degree of confidence and removal of some of the concern
that somebody is just going to go out and do what they want do when they're in that category. >> woodruff: as i understand it, the new guidelines are recommendation and it's up to the state to enact guidelines that are or are not as strict as this. >> it is highly unlikely there will be guidelines not as strict as this. the c.d.c. is indeed working closely with state health authorities and other local health authorities to try and get a coordination to all of. this but it has always been the situation where the c.d.c. sets the base below which you can't go. there's always the possibility that some states would want to go even beyond that, but we feel that the recommendations that have been made now by the c.d.c. with their new interim guidelines are based on solid scientific evidence, and it's not going overboard in some respects, but in other respects making sure that the science guides what they do.
>> woodruff: dr. fauci, you were pretty clear yesterday in saying you did not think it was wise, the quawrn teen revictions that had been imposed by the governor of new york, the governor of new jersey, those restrictions have now been walked back. how much pressure came from the federal government from the obama administration on these governors to change? >> well, judy, i don't think it was pressure, i think it was an articulation of the rationale for why we feel that, although we're very sensitive to the concerns of people, we want to make sure that the kinds of things we do are guided by sound scientific evidence, and i think that the dialogue and the discussion back and forth has brought some rethinking on the part of some about how far one should go. so instead of having a big basket of quawrn teen for people, yows do it on an evaluation. certainly there will be some circumstances are someone is at such a high risk that you would
almost have the same functional type of restriction that you would with so-called quarantine. but you want to be careful not to throw everyone into that same basket, so you have stratification and clinical judgment that dictates the kind of restriction that you have. >> woodruff: and these arm rules that were reported today, the fact that the u.s. army is saying american troops who worked in the ebola-infected areas of west africa, they will be quarantined for 21 days in italy. is that contradicting these other guidelines coming out from the c.d.c.? >> no, it really isn't, judy. it may appear to be contradicting but it's not because, when you're dealing in the military service, you have commands, the disciplines, the barracks to do the kind of things. they come back and report to their barracks anyway, so the military situation is a bit different because of their capability of organization and control of movement of their own
trips. that's -- troops. that's very different from the civilian population. >> woodruff: finally, are you hearing personally of healthcare workers who are now rethinking or decided not to go to west africa because of these new restrictions? >> well, to be honest with you, yes. there are people that are concerned because when they get this feeling that if they go back there's going to be something that's completely not based on scientific data that they're going to be restricted, they all feel very strongly that if they are at risk to other people, they would want to be restricted. that's the point, they would want to be restricted. so i don't think that this idea of giving the kinds of recommendations right now i think is going to fortify them and say, well, at least i know it's not going to just be arbitrary, it's going to be based on science, and i think that would encourage them to continue to go over there. >> woodruff: dr. anthony fauci, the national institutes of health. we thank you. >> good to be with you.
>> woodruff: in other news, friday's high school shooting in marysville, washington claimed a third life. 14-year-old gia soriano died sunday night. two other students remained in critical condition. today, an impromptu memorial of flowers and other offerings expanded along a chain-link fence at the school. classes were canceled for the day. in iraq, government troops and allied shi-ite militias were hit by a suicide car bombing, a day after recapturing a key town. the bombing killed at least 24 people in jurf al-sakhar, just 30 miles south of baghdad. islamic state forces had seized the town in july, but were driven out yesterday. the last u.s. and british forces were airlifted from a major base in southern afghanistan today, after 13 years. the massive facility in helmand province was officially closed sunday.
foreign combat troops are due to leave afghanistan by year's end, but roughly 9,800 americans will stay on, to train afghan units. more than 250 people have died in central yemen, in three days of heavy fighting between shi- ite rebels and sunni tribes allied with al-qaeda. the battle around radda began last week when the shiites entered the town after government troops abandoned their posts. financial markets in brazil tumbled today after leftist president dilma rousseff narrowly won re-election. she took 51% of the vote in a runoff against a pro-business challenger. last night, rousseff celebrated in brasilia with supporters who waved flags and chanted her name. she acknowledged that half the electorate voted against her. >> ( translated ): a re-election vote is a vote of hope, especially for improving the actions of those who have been
governing. that is what i've heard from the voting booths. that is why i want to be a much better president than i have been up until now. >> woodruff: brazil has been beset by a sluggish economy and poor public services during rousseff's first term. a major secular party in tunisia claimed victory over islamists today in a historic vote. sunday's election will produce the north african nation's first five-year parliament since the 2011 arab spring revolt. the votes were still being counted, but the secular tunis calls party said it had won the most seats. >> woodruff: wall street struggled to make headway as falling oil prices hurt energy stocks, and worries about europe's economy lingered. the dow jones industrial average gained just 12 points to close near 16,818; the nasdaq rose two points to close near 4,486; while the s&p 500 slipped three, to finish at 1,961. >> woodruff: still to come on the newshour.
the orphans created by ebola. a look at the political landscape with midterm elections only a week away. ukrainians vote for pro-europe political parties. a call for african lions to be protected as an endangered species. adapting physical education for students with disabilities. and, a fresh start for struggling blues musicians in america. >> woodruff: as the number of deaths from the ebola virus continue to climb in west africa, so too, is the number of children left behind without parents. dan rivers of independent television news reports from sierra leone on their uncertain future. >> reporter: their faces are haunted by all they have lost. these three children are ebola orphans. little joshua is just three.
his sister victoria is five, but both are too young to understand why mom and dad have gone forever. they're been looked after by their aunt zeinab and ten-year- old brother joseph. >> it is not easy but i am coping up with that. >> reporter: it must be difficult what you've been through. >> yeah, it is difficult. since when i lost my mum and dad, i have been facing a lot of problems. it is difficult to look after my sister and my brother. >> reporter: they all now depend on zeinab. herself mourning the death of her husband, who was also taken by ebola. she says the children always talk about their parents, but i tell them to accept me as their mother. today, they received some basic
aid from british charity street child. there are 26 people sharing this house. joseph shows me their crammed bedroom devoid of toys, just a few things that they could take from their home before it was quarantined. >> if this thing is not contained, maybe by the end of november we will be talking about 10,000 orphans being created as a result of ebola. >> reporter: in this country, children face an incredibly tough upbringing at the best of times. but these days with ebola, there's no school, many shops are closed and there is fear on every street. in families like joseph's are facing all that without the two people who are most important to them. >> ebola is trying to wipe-off all of our people in this country. but i strongly believe that it will get out from our country soon. >> reporter: he treasures a
mobile phone his dad gave him. it's all he has, not even a photo of his parents. it's difficult to imagine a crueler fate for this boy lost in the nightmare of ebola. >> woodruff: jeffrey brown has more on the growing number of orphans in west africa, and how aid agencies are dealing with that crisis. >> brown: i'm joined by sarah crowe, chief of communications crisis from unicef, she returned from a six-week trip to liberia. can you give us an interview first, how big and widespread a problem is this now. >> it is an extraordinary problem. we're seeing every few weeks the number of ebola case are doubling, which means that the numbers of orphans are going to increase as well because those who are falling ill and dying from ebola are people of child bearing age. we estimate at the moment there are 4,000-plus orphans and this is probably only the tip of the iceberg in the three affected countries. so it's really testing, throwing
new challenges at us we've never had to face before. >> brown: i assume the biggest problem is fear itself -- fear of the disease and then fear of the children because they're coming from where the disease has been. how difficult is it to place them with their own families, larger extended families or in other kinds of facilities? >> well, every few days, our country's offices and other countries are getting stories and information about children who are simply abandoned. the case recently this week of a child-headed household, a 15-year-old taking care of her brother and sister because they were left under a tree to fend for themselves because family had shunned them. so those cases, what we have to do is to find emergency care. the good news is some 600 children in the past few weeks in liberia alone have been placed with foster care and survivors or those who have been
through this terrible ordeal of having the disease and being able to then care and nurture children are the best for them. they're able to give the children the kind of care nobody else could give because they know what it's like. so it really is an uphill all the time because this is an absolutely mon you mental battle. but there are now protocols in place followed by many of our partners and we're working closely with government and all our partners but it's not quite enough yet. >> brown: briefly, finally, we're talking about the immediate concerns. what about if you're able to think about the lorchger-term effect here of lack of education of the children, health concerns going out, psychological long-term effects. what are the worries there? >> well, ebola has eroded every single aspect of life. it has impacted children's
health. they're not getting the routine immunization they need, pregnant women are not getting the support they need, children are not going to school. the problem and needs are outpacing everyone's ability to be able to respond fast enough. we're sprinting against time. >> brown: sarah crowe of unicef. thank you so much. >> thank you. >> woodruff: and now to politics, there is just a week to go until election day and polls are showing tight races in the contests that will decide control of the senate. of the 36 states where there are senate races, polls are showing ten of them within five points. with republicans needing to net six seats to take control anything can happen. to help guide us through the states and where things are leaning, are stu rothenberg of the rothenberg political report and amy walter of the cook political report.
we well come you both back. >> thanks. >> woodruff: let's talk about the firewall states, the states that the democrats really don't want to lose in order to hang on control of the senate and the ones the republicans need if they're going to pick up the senate. amy, what does it look like? >> the states would be colorado, iowa and north carolina. those are the states for the democrats. these are states, colorado and iowa barack obama won twice. north carolina he carried once. these are states democrats had thought at the beginning they could be able to hold on to, especially colorado and iowa because of how strong dwms have done there in the last eight years. the problem now for democrats is that the numbers for their democratic candidates have been slowly eroding, and you're seeing republicans in some cases ahead or within one or two points. these two states are very different than how they looked
in 2012. the president's numbers have tumbled in these stays, even and especially among those groups of voters we think of as obama voters -- young people, latinos, women. so that is a real problem, then, for democrats is those states we thought were going to be safer are showing serious cracks. >> woodruff: what would you add to that and what are republicans sweating over? >> a couple of things. the problem with the firewall is that it's after the destruction has already taken place. there are six states before the firewall the democrats could lose, and that might be enough to give the republicans control. but the democrats are counting, are hoping to win one or two republican states, that's kansas and georgia. so there are a lot of moving pieces, judy, as some republican states have come into play. remember early on a year ago we were talking about mitch mcconnell, te kentucky, that gis the democrats a chance.
in kansas pat rockets is running against greg orman and even the independents everyone thought would caucus with the democrats. >> woodruff: a lot of people have voted, amy. what's going to make a difference in the last seven days? >> this has been the challenge in the entire campaign. you look at the republican challenge to nationalize the election and make it about barack obama, an unpopular president in the sixth year. for the democrats it's let's make this about the individual candidates, not the national issues, localize it. the problem for the democrats is the national mood is driving the emotions of the elections. we hear about ebola, i.s.i.s., school shootings, a lot of bad news, and the good news that's coming out isn't strong enough to outweigh that. there is good news on the economic front let you -- yet you talk to voters who feel
stuck and are not moving ahead. so there's the national election which is bad thing for them. >> you can count on republicans in state after state to close with the message about this is about barack obama or use the obama comment about he's not on the ballot but his policies are on the ballot. in every and different way, you will see that kind of message delivered by the republicans. the democrat candidate is going to have to say, it's not about washington, d.c., it's about tom tellis or david perdue or alaska. it's different in this kind of environment. >> woodruff: we hear so much about how americans are disgusted in washington, they don't like the people serving in the congress, they don't like what's going on at the white house, the media focusing on these close races but, amy, when it comes down to it, we looked at it today, a number of the house and the senate are coming back and don't even have a serious opponent. >> that's been a consistent problem that voters even when
they're the most frustrated with washington send incumbents back. that's what democrats are hoping is the case. this is why the race is still this close is the fact that voters are saying we don't like the job the president is doing but, on the other side, they're not excited to vote for republican either and this is the big challenge for the republicans to go forward. no matter how great a night in 2014, it's still very damaged and we have to figure out how to fix that. >> people have all sorts of opinions. the question is what drives their vote. which opinions they use to evaluate candidates. and they simply don't vote on congress as an institution. they have strong feelings. they're voting on candidates or even the president. though the president has much better job approval ratings than congress does, right now they will vote on him. >> these are congressional elections but people aren't
voting onen congress? let me get this straight. >> the president drives the vote whether democrat or republican. >> two quick things, you were talking to us about today, a lot of focus on the governor's races. more governor's races up in the air than usual. your view is it doesn't have a lot to do with 2016, which is a theory going around. >> governor's races are important. they create policies, laboratories for ideas, these are important. people are saying, well, it's important who the governor of florida is for the 2016 presidential race. that's not true. it's easy to fall back on that, but the reality is 2016 will involve two big, big, big candidates, nominees for the republican and democrat party, and the voters will vote on them, not who the governor of florida is. >> woodruff: quickly to both of you, surprises you expect on election night? >> you will be here with us.
>> woodruff: well, that's true. >> surprises will that it's an early night. the exec says is it's an early night. we'll be going to the close races. some may go to runoff or recount. if we see on election night, new hampshire, north carolina going for republicans, will be an early night. >> i agree on new hampshire and north carolina. i would look to see whether democrats might pick up governorships in republican states like kansas and alaska and republicans might pick up very blue democratic states like massachusetts, connecticut, maybe even maryland. a long shot but possible. >> aimee michael, tamy, stu, se. >> woodruff: now to the crisis in ukraine, where citizens sent
a clear message to russian president vladimir putin this weekend. chief foreign affairs correspondent margaret warner reports. >> warner: voters in war-torn ukraine made a decisive turn toward to europe and away from russia with sunday's parliamentary election. president petro poroshenko, elected in may, hailed the outcome today. >> i think that this election was another test that ukraine successfully passed for the democracy, for the openness, for the freedom. >> warner: with more than 60 percent of votes tallied, the big winners were the two main, pro-western parties: poroshenko's bloc, and the popular front party of his governing ally, prime minister arseniy yatsenyuk. >> ( translated ): the basis of the new coalition is the association agreement with the european union. and this is must be the basis for the coalition agreement >> warner: such an agreement to integrate ukraine economically with europe was rejected last
november by pro-moscow president viktor yanukovych. the uprising that followed ended with him fleeing. after poroshenko was elected in may, he signed the pact. still, ukraine remains divided. there was no voting in russian- annexed crimea and it was light to non-existent across parts of donetsk and luhansk, the two eastern provinces where pro- russian separatists hold sway. >> ( translated ): we have already made our choice, and i think our cause is right and we will win. >> warner: indeed, heavy fighting in the east persists despite a cease-fire declared six weeks ago. two more ukrainian soliders died sunday adding to the nearly 4000 people killed since april, and leaving many with little hope. >> i think nothing will change in the east of the country after these elections. everything will depend on putin's desires. >> warner: officials in moscow said today they will recognize the results of yesterday's election. but there will be separate elections this weekend run by the rebels, who've declared themselves independent of ukraine.
>> woodruff: a short time ago, i spoke to david herszenhorn who is covering the election for the "new york times" in kiev. david herszenhorn, thank you very much for talking with us. are these election results considered valid since parts of the eastern ukraine either didn't vote at all or voted in small numbers? >> well, international observers give the vote really high marks from a technical perspective. there's no question that the fact that millions of people could not vote in the east and, of course, in crimea, which is annexed by russia is a factor. they say that has to be taken into consideration. but the way the vote for parliament is structured, half of the seats are filled by a national vote for party preference than proportionately. there's no question that's valid. some districts will go unfilled, 27 seats perhaps in the 450-seat parliament that will be empty as a result of people not voting. >> woodruff: david, we just reported heavy fighting continues in the east.
what bearing, what effect is it thought that these election results will have on the unrest that still holds in the east? >> well, this is the most important question for ukraine's future now, how to solve the question of this conflict in the east. and what the voters told the government, the message sent to the world was they want the people in charge now to continue their efforts to resolve this. that requires the cooperation of russia and president vladimir putin. but the message was not a militaristic one. they didn't want to go with parties that are more belligerent, looking to fight more. they're looking to get this solved. the question is will the parties now come to the table, getting past this election. >> woodruff: so when we hear the russians are saying they will respect the results of the election, is that believed on the streets of kiev and across ukraine? >> there's a lot of skepticism.
the prime minister said russia would respect the results, at the same time he repeated the kremlin's strong criticism of current ukrainian policies. repeating rete rec we've heard since winter. so there is quite a bit of skepticism, a lot of doubts, certainly one of the messengers in this vote was an anti-russian message, there will not be a single communist in the ukrainian parliament or legislature for the first time in nearly 100 years. >> woodruff: what is the status of the fighting? does one side or the other seem of the upper hand now? >> there's no question that the ukrainian government under the current circumstances is not in control of a large part of these embattled eastern regions. so in that sense, the ukrainian government is at a disadvantage the longer the status quo is in place. in other words, a cease fire
agreement signed in early september, but there has been no cease fire and the challenge is no one has any incentive to admit that's the case. so the fighting continues on a day-to-day basis. meanwhile, russia, ukraine, united states, the west, everyone is hoping the truth will hold, but that just isn't the case. >> woodruff: again, all of this is despite the truce and cease fire. >> that's right, there has to be a political solution. likely that will come in some kind of direct negotiation between ukraine and russia, some understanding. we still have a complicated political situation. the rebels are planning their own elections next month. they obviously blocked voting throughout the region there. so the next chapters are not certain yet. >> woodruff: david herszenhorn with the "new york times" talking to us from kiev. we thank you. >> sure thing.
>> woodruff: the african lion, their pictures speak to their power, beauty, strength and pride and those stunning images are pretty much tied to the idea of what a safari took would look like, but their numbers are shrinking. and today the federal government took a step aimed at protecting their future. jeffrey brown has our conversation. >> brown: today, there are thought to be little more than 30,000 african lions remaining on the continent. and about 70% of those live in just 10 major strongholds. the u.s. fish and wildlife service is proposing that the african lion be listed as an endangered species. following a years-long push from a coalition of advocacy groups. a representative from one of them joins us now: jeff flocken of the international fund for animal welfare, the wildlife service says, the three main threats facing african lions are habitat loss, loss of prey base, and increased human-lion conflict. explain what that means for us.
today's announcement was very important for lions. it not only said this species is endangered with extinction but deserves protection. you mentioned there's habitat loss and when there's conflict of people and lions killed in retall yags by loss of prey base: the government announced there's a way to include a system to monitor and regulate imports of trophy-hunted lion in the u.s. and that's the best way to protect them here in the u.s. >> brown: they called for a new requirement for a permit but also said spear hunting is not found to be a threat to the species at this time. it's a little confusing. explain that. >> sure. studies actually have shown an area where there has been intense sport hunting, there have been steep declines of lions in those populations. lions have a unique social structure where if you were to kill the energiest dominant male, it dructs the whole pride
which results in new males coming over, females can die protecting their young and the cubs can be killed to reassert itself. by cutting back observe sport hunting and finding a more sustainable way to help the species. >> brown: the wildlife service have calling more intent to the issue of the encroachments of humans and development. that means too much contact, humans taking away the land, taking away the prey, the other wildlife libs would eat. >> absolutely. lines face a number of threats. honestly, stopping trophy hunting is the most easily addressed. today's decision went out of its way to start regulating permits. americans are responsible for over 60% of all african lions killed for sport in africa and this new system will help to monitor and regulate how the
trophies come back into the u.s. >> brown: is that why this would be on a u.s.-designated list? what is the issue for a u.s. agency looking at this? >> absolutely. the u.s. endangered species act actually have provisions that allows a list of foreign species. it could have just under 600 species listed and by doing that we regulate the trade americans bring back and forth into the country of these animals we are protecting. over 9 to thousand of americans polled wanted to see trophy hunting banned if it would save the lions. that species is in trouble. >> brown: jeff flocken, president of the international fund for animal welfare, thank you. >> thank you. >> woodruff: childhood obesity is an increasing problem in the
united states a recent study found that family meals may help battle the bulge in kids. but physical activity is also an important factor in keeping them healthy. the newshour's april brown reports on one district that has taken special care to make sure students with disabilities are active. it's part of our american graduate project. >> reporter: physical education for these students in miami, florida looks nothing like the calisthenics and kickball of yesteryear the teenagers from american senior high school are getting ready for a workout at oleta river state park on biscayne bay. >> and then we have these back clips here. perfect! >> woodruff: preparing their kayaks so they can spend time in this outdoor classroom. >> good job guys, way to go. >> woodruff: and though you may not notice at first, all of them are students with autism. >> we grab a boat we put them right in the water, we get the paddles, the seats, we set them up.
>> woodruff: it didn't take long for 16-year-old daniel hernandez to become a seasoned kayaker. >> i like kayaking because it makes me feel happy and fun. >> woodruff: daniel and his classmates, including 19-year old demetrius sesler, have also learned the basics of sailing. >> can you reach the line in the front of the boat the bow line? >> when i got on a sailboat for the first time i was, i was excited. and that was, and that was the same when i first got on a kayak. it was fun, it was fun. >> students with autism love water, it's relaxing, so the kayaking that repetitive thing that same thing they really enjoy it.
>> reporter: annie perez teaches physical education at american senior high. while all her students have the opportunity to try activities like kayaking and sailing she says the experiences are particularly important for her students with disabilities. >> their self esteem becomes more evident in a positive way, their physical ability improves, just seeing the pleasure they get. and they can achieve it, it just takes a little longer than others. >> reporter: it's been well documented in recent years that many americans are exercising less and more are becoming overweight or even obese but what's often overlooked is that children with disabilities are far less likely to be physically active and nearly 40% more likely to be obese than children without disabilities according to the centers for disease control and prevention. and while many schools are cutting p.e. to make way for more time for reading and math the push toward physical education that kids both want to
participate in, and p.e. that's fully adapted to suit children of all abilities, has been a work in progress at miami-dade public schools for years. the woman who was behind the assault on inactivity is jayne greenberg. >> they've told us they want activities that they can do for their lifetime so sailing, kayaking last year we added paddle boarding. we started giving the kids what they wanted and now we have so many students signing for physical education we're actually turning them away. >> reporter: greenberg is in charge of the district's physical education and health literacy programs and serves on the president's council on fitness, sports and nutrition. she and her staff have been breaking down the barriers to often inaccessible facilities and equipment for kids with intellectual, developmental and physical disabilities. >> we don't get to say which students get some opportunities and which ones are left behind, those days are way over. >> reporter: federal law requires equal access to p.e. but the government accounting office has found that nationwide their opportunities for physical
activity are often limited. that's not the case in miami- dade school where equipment is often modified like this sailboat with controls similar to that on a motorized wheelchair. greenberg says she was inspired to make these kinds of changes after an incident early in her teaching career. >> i took classes in adaptive physical education but when i had a student in a wheelchair i had really no idea how to get that student involved in the soccer game so the student literally sat on the court keeping score and i swore to myself back then that would never happen again. >> reporter: but kayaks, modified sailboats, and even transportation can be expensive like these specialized lift busses that are bringing students from south miami senior high school to the international links golf course. >> we needed lift busses will cost me today about $600 to get the students here. but if you ask me is that $600
well spent? you better believe it. >> reporter: because, she says, every child needs the opportunity to be physically active. so with no extra funding for these programs greenberg went looking for grants to help cover a variety of costs and her own found community partners willing to share their time and talent in her own backyard. >> when our kids come out and they leave the school setting and they are in a community setting they don't feel like they are alone, they don't feel like they are different >> woodruff: greenberg found that after she made her pitch, groups stepped up to the plate including oleta river state park some of miami's professional sports teams and the dade amateur golf association's first tee program. >> i want everybody to try hard, you're going to try hard, right? >> yeah. >> okay, here we go. >> woodruff: the first tee's professionals like mario avello offer their expertise to aspiring golfers many of whom never before had the opportunity to play including marilyn carrera. >> i like golf. >> i hit a bullseye! >> woodruff: and juan colindres the first tee's executive director, charlie delucca, says he's seen how people often underestimate what students with
disabilities can do: >> they want to work. they don't want to just sit around and do nothing. you know, and not only they can do jobs, they do great jobs. they can use a computer much better than i can use a computer. you ask these kids to do something they do it. and you can't stop them from doing it. >> reporter: and that motivation and confidence says greenberg are only two of the benefits of giving children with disabilities these kinds of opportunities. >> we know that there is a great correlation now scientifically evidence based that the more physically active students are the more they improve academically. their academic performance will improve, but we've also seen great strides in fitness levels with our students with disabilities. >> reporter: the p.e. days out kayaking, sailing or hitting the link, don't happen every day. students also have a variety of activities they do at school, and they'll often do them with their peers who don't have disabilities.
but according to greenberg, the value of having these kids try sports and other forms of exercise many might think they couldn't do is priceless. >> you can't buy that type of experience. so many of our kids are nonverbal that you just have to look at them and smile and see their smile back or their excitement when they can do something. the things we take for granted you know tapping a golf ball with a club with so little effort is just so incredibly important to the students that when they finally connect it's like they've won a gold medal. >> look at that, good job! >> woodruff: american graduate is a public media initiative funded by the corporation for public broadcasting. you can see more on our website. >> woodruff: finally tonight, nobody knows you when you're down and out. jeffrey brown reports on an effort to help musicians who are
literally living the blues. >> brown: at 75, ironing board sam has certainly had his share of ups and even more downs. ♪ ♪ he was born sammie moore the stage name came early in his career when he built his own makeshift music stand. ♪ ♪ in the 60s, he was a regular on night train, a nashville tv show featuring up-and-coming rhythm and blues acts. ♪ ♪ he played with the likes of jimi hendrix and even opened for aretha franklin. ♪ ♪ but ironing board sam never made it big and for several decades he eked out a living washing dishes while playing at dance parties and small clubs around the south. he became a fixture on new orleans bourbon street, literally playing on the street, known for his flashy style. and then, in 2005, he disappeared.
>> for four years i was looking for him, and we found him in rock hill, south carolina, and living in just a squalid little trailer, playing at a little sports bar, and we met him and he said he was just giving up and was ready to go into the next world. >> brown: tim duffy is founder of the north carolina-based music maker relief foundation, which for 20 years has helped struggling blues musicians. >> we literally said get in the car, we took him up here to hillsborough, got him an apartment, got him teeth, got him glasses, got him to the doctors, got him performing attire, clothes, shoes, everything. >> brown: since 1994, duffys been traveling through the south and beyond. working with artists like boo hanks, a farmer in buffalo junction, virginia. and captain luke, an 86-year-old whose baritone has filled church halls and bars.
musicians, there are hundreds and even thousands of them, who found a small following but never rose to stardom. ♪ ♪ music maker helps them meet basic needs. and also, regain their musical lives and, for some, their dignity by recording their music and booking tours. >> if an artist does not have money for a new set of guitar strings, like simple six bucks, their neighbor does not have six bucks, their preacher does not have six bucks, no one in the community has an extra six bucks for those guitar strings, a simple thing like that. >> brown: to date, music maker has put out 168 albums. including, this years anniversary collection of its artists and a new book of portraits, taken by duffy, now on exhibit in carrboro, north carolina before heading to the b.b. king museum in mississippi. over two days this past weekend, earlier this month some 50 of music makers 300 musicians gathered near durham to celebrate the organization.
there were group photos, and of course, a lot of music. from artists like lakota john, little freddie king, and pat mother blues cohen. ♪ ♪ cohen, like ironing board sam, was once a regular in the new orleans scene. she was washed out by hurricane katrina, losing everything that matters to a musician. >> i lost every connection that i had, no musicians, no clubs, no friends, you know, you need that, you need that and people overlook how important friendship is, and they overlook how important connections are especially if you're in this
business, unless you're planning on not doing anything, and so i didn't for a while. >> brown: music maker helped her establish a new network of regular, paying gigs, including several in europe. >> without music maker, these musicians would be invisible, to borrow ralph ellisons phrase. >> brown: william ferris, a scholar of southern culture at the university of north carolina who once headed the national endowment for the humanities, led a discussion with several artists and talked to us about the important role of music maker. >> they provide a model for what our nation should be doing, the new deal under f.d.r. did this for the entire nation, and tim duffy thankfully is doing it for the community of blues artists. >> brown: i see why its good for them, why is it important for the rest of us? >> its important for the rest of us because it enlarges our understanding of who we are as americans.
it gives us a whole new sense of the roots of our american music, and in the south that is even more important. >> brown: that fraught racial history isn't lost on duffy. a white man from the north he was raised in new haven, connecticut he says he faced much skepticism from artists at the outset, many of whom had been ripped off and forgotten by outsiders. he says he worked hard to overcome that. >> music maker works one on one with artists to make a partnership, where its an equal exchange. like, i really feel when i take someone's picture or record their music, i just don't leave. you know, im against that. its a long time commitment. that's why i have artists working with me for 20 years. ironing board sam, a member of music maker since 2010, recently returned from two shows in france. >> if you be a musician long time, life is like a see-saw,
you're gonna go, its gonna go up and down. in the down part, the relief foundation pick you back up, put you on level, get you started making money and feeling good about yourself. >> brown: its amazing after all your years of playing and all your experience, and now you're getting to go to france. >> yeah, now im getting to the place i wanted to go. >> brown: and with 34 shows so far this year, ironing board seems in no mood to slow down. ♪ ♪ >> woodruff: again, the major developments of the day. new york and new jersey eased ebola quarantine rules for doctors and nurses returning from west africa. instead, the c.d.c. called for voluntary in-home isolation for those deemed to be high-risk.
and the death toll in friday's high school shooting near seattle, washington, rose to three. investigators also said fellow student jaylen fryberg invited his victims to sit together for lunch, then opened fire, before killing himself. in a reminder, we will be here next tuesday, november 4 for special coverage of the mid-term elections. tune in on air and online all night. the latest results and full analysis. plus we'll have a special report at 11:00 p.m. eastern. >> woodruff: and that's the newshour for tonight. on tuesday, we'll look at the hotly contested senate race in north carolina. i'm judy woodruff. we'll see you on-line, and again here tomorrow evening. for all of us here at the pbs newshour, thank you and good night. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by:
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